4 Jan

Geographical Review Preview: Contesting Place Names:  The East Sea/Sea of Japan naming issue

By: John Rennie Short, Leah Dubots

What is the main purpose of your study? 
To assess the extent of dual naming of East Sea/Sea of Japan in popular media, atlases and textbooks, and the internet.

What are the practical, day to day, implications of your study? 
That dual naming is now more common in many outlets than the singular use of Sea of

How does your study relate to other work on the subject?

It builds on the study of how and why geographic features are named, why these names
are often contested and sometimes changed.

What are two or three interesting findings that come from your study? 
Many newspapers and journals around the world and internet sites use the dual name
East Sea /Sea of Japan.
Most atlases use the dual name and a significant proportion of geographical textbooks.
Dual naming is common on the internet

What might be some of the theoretical implications of this study? 
How dual naming can occur where there was once only a singular name.

How does your research help us think about Geography? 
It makes us consider that place naming is not just a simple description but is also a politically loaded linguistic practice that reflects the (changing) distribution of power.

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Click here to read the abstract of this article.